What the World Was Watching: Smoky Mountain TV – February 18, 1995

Jim Ross and Les Thatcher do commentary and they are at a new taping location in Lenoir, North Carolina.  According to prowrestlinghistory.com, the taping at the Mulberry Street Recreational Center drew 375 fans.

Opening Contest:  Unabom (w/Eddie Gilbert) (0-1) beats Robert Gibson via disqualification when Ricky Morton interferes at 2:05:

Last week the show ran out of time before it could air the rest of this match, so we join it in progress.  The match marks Gilbert’s last appearance on American television as he died the day this show aired in Puerto Rico of a heart attack.  Gibson finds no way to counter Unabom’s massive frame and the heel goes to give him a unabomb.  However, Morton charges into the ring with a chair and hits Unabom several times before he leaves the ring.

Ross interviews SMW Tag Team Champions the Rock N’ Roll Express.  Ross tells fans that Gilbert refused to pay the $2,500 fine levied against him by Commissioner Bob Armstrong and that he got into an altercation with SMW official Ron West, so he has been fired from the promotion.  Morton says that Gilbert took the easy way out and they are not concerned about Unabom finding a new tag team partner.

Beat the Champ Television Championship Match:  Boo Bradley (4-0) defeats the Wolfman after a splash off the top rope to win the title at 2:07:

To determine who would become the next television champion after Buddy Landel wrapped up five successful title defenses, SMW drew two wrestler names out of a hat.  Chris Candido joins the commentary team, so he run down Bradley during the match.  These two wrestled last week, with Bradley winning easily.  This time, the Wolfman does a little better by putting Bradley in a nerve hold but that is his only offensive maneuver as Bradley powerslams him and comes off the top rope with a splash to win the title.

Ross interviews Candido.  Candido says that he is not worried about facing Boo Bradley at the end of the month because he is a world class athlete.  He says that if he does not defeat Bradley at Sunday Bloody Sunday II that he should leave SMW.  Ross tries to pin him down on whether he would leave if he lost and Candido reluctantly agrees if Bradley does too.

A video package puts over SMW Champion Jerry Lawler to the tune of Bon Jovi’s “King of the Mountain.”

The Dirty White Boy does a taped promo on a rural farm in Eastern Tennessee and rides a horse.  The White Boy says that Lawler is a yankee and is coming to Knoxville to get his SMW title back.  He blasts Buddy Landel for talking badly about his family and vows revenge.

Ross interviews Landel, who portrays himself as SMW’s Ric Flair, bragging about limos, suits, and beautiful women.  He complains about not getting an immediate title shot against Lawler at Brawl in the Hall because he helped Lawler become champion.  Landel vows to win the SMW title at Sunday Blood Sunday II and hopes that he gets to beat the White Boy for it.  He wraps up by comparing the Dirty White Girl to a horse and joking that she has been ridden by so many men that her name is Trigger.  That causes the White Boy to hit the ring, pulverize Landel, and tear off his suit.

Ross interviews the Gangstas and D’Lo Brown.  New Jack says that they are not worried about there being a special guest referee at Sunday Bloody Sunday II.  He hypes a big “X” flag that Brown holds up and says it is going to replace the rebel flag, drawing big boos from the crowd.

Al Snow pins George South after the Simply Sensational Dive at 2:49:

Trained by Jim Lancaster in the early 1980s, Snow worked his way through the Midwest independent circuit and by the 1990s was becoming noticed by larger promotions like SMW.  He helped train Dan Severn for UFC IV and a few days before his debut in SMW he wrestled Chris Benoit in a **** at ECW’s Double Tables event in Philadelphia.  Billed as “Simply Sensational,” Snow sports sunglasses and a towel, gloating about his wrestling ability.  According to Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer this match had to be retaped because Snow was not used to doing television squashes and he stalled too much in the first match.  After trading holds, Snow clothesline South from the apron, delivers a slingshot leg drop, and then hits a springboard splash from the apron – called the Simply Sensation Dive – to win.

Ross interviews Snow, who welcomes out Unabom and announces that they are a new tag team.  Snow tells the Rock N’ Roll Express that he is going to be a legend killer.  When Ross tries to keep the interview going, Snow cuts it off by saying it is time to go to the locker room and “have some sex.”  Ross just gives a disgusted look to end the segment.

Thatcher interviews Jim Cornette.  Cornette says that New Jack’s picture looks like it should be on a syrup container like Aunt Jemima.  Comments like that completely inverts the face-heel dynamic when one watches it today.  He announces that the special guest referee for the six-man tag team match at Sunday Bloody Sunday II will be Commissioner Bob Armstrong.  Armstrong comes out dancing with an aluminum baseball bat.  The Gangstas and D’Lo Brown surround the ring with nightsticks, but the New Wild-Eyed Southern Boys prevent a beating from occurring.

Call 1-900-73-SMOKY to vote on whether the Dirty White Boy went too far on today’s broadcast!

The New Wild-Eyed Southern Boys defeat the Infernos when Smothers pins Brimstone after a flying spinning elbow at 1:49:

The Infernos wear red body suits with masks, are billed from hell, and their names are Fire and Brimstone.  Ross ignores the jobbers’ names, just calling them “the Inferno.”  The New Southern Boys go through some basic offense until Fire breaks up a pin from a Scott Armstrong superkick and then all hell breaks loose, resulting in Armstrong holding Brimstone in place for Tracy Smothers to do a flying spinning elbow off the top rope for the pin.

After the match, the Gangstas and D’Lo Brown attack the Southern Boys.  They get in some good shots until Commissioner Bob Armstrong and Jim Cornette make the save and then shake hands to end the show.

The Last Word:  Al Snow and Unabom already look like a natural pairing, with Snow picking up right where Eddie Gilbert left off in the annoying heel department.  The main event did little to put over the New Wild-Eyed Southern Boys team as something great, reinforced by two older men having to save them from a beating.  A Jim Cornette turn appears imminent as this cozy relationship with Bob Armstrong cannot last.  That caused groans among diehard SMW fans because the Cornette-Armstrong feud was already played out the previous year.  And finally, Boo Bradley is probably not going to hang onto the Beat the Champ Television Championship for long because it gets in the way of his feud with Chris Candido.

SMW ran two house shows over the weekend in Georgia and West Virginia.  Here were the results of those shows courtesy of prowrestlinghistory.com:

Villa Rica, Georgia – February 17, 1995 (225):  Boo Bradley pinned Chris Candido in a “loser eats dog food match”…The Dirty White Boy pinned Mustafa…Ricky Morton defeated Unabom via disqualification…The New Wild-Eyed Southern Boys beat the Gangstas via disqualification.

Princeton, West Virginia – Princeton High School – February 18, 1995 (300):  Robert Gibson beat Unabom via disqualification…The Dirty White Boy beat Buddy Landel via disqualification…Boo Bradley pinned Mr. Wrestling ’95.  Mr. Wrestling was booked as being from Center Stage, Georgia, the site of WCW’s Saturday Night tapings…New Jack pinned Tracy Smothers…SMW Tag Team Champions the Rock N’ Roll Express beat Mustafa & D’Lo Brown…Ricky Morton won a battle royal.

Backstage News*:        Eddie Gilbert was found dead in his apartment in Puerto Rico on the evening of February 18.  SMW personnel were saddened to the hear the news and referee Brian Hildebrand (Mark Curtis) openly wondered whether Gilbert would have passed away if he stayed in the promotion and had not abruptly departed to book for Carlos Colon’s World Wrestling Council (WWC).

*Dan Severn will work an SMW show in Erlanger, Kentucky on February 24 to defeat Chris Candido for the NWA World Championship.  Candido is heading to the WWF in March.

*Scott Armstrong did not work the recent WCW Disney taping since WCW decided to use Tim Horner as Brad Armstrong’s tag team partner.  However, he was paid $150 a night and that is why he did not appear on house shows a few weeks ago with Tracy Smothers.

*Backstage news provided courtesy of Dave Meltzer’s Wrestling Observer for March 6.

Up Next:  Smoky Mountain Television for February 25!

My third e-book recently dropped on Amazon, which recaps WCW from the first Monday Nitro in September 1995 to December.  It is $2.99 and covers all of the matches, angles, and events of the beginning of the Monday Night Wars.  My author page also provides links to my other works on the WWF and WCW in 1995.